Virginia Q2, 2019 Employment Statistics

  • 281,944 employers, up 2.1% from 276,057
  • 3,954,204 employees, up 1.1% from 3,912,363
  • $1,113 average weekly wage, up 3.7% from $1,073
  • The average weekly wage is 1.6% above the national average
  • The cost of living is 0.7% above the national average

Employer & Employee Growth

In the last year, the number of employers in the state increased by 5,887, which is an increase of 2.1%. The number of employees in Virginia increased by 41,840, an increase of 1.1%. During this same period, the average weekly wage increased by $40, an increase of 3.7%.

The number of private employers increased since last years' Q1. The number of private businesses increased by 5,751 or 2.1%. Growth in private businesses in Virginia grew slower than the national average of 2.9%. The number of employees in these businesses increased since last years' Q1, increasing by 36,342 or 1.1%. The growth in employees of private businesses in Virginia was slower than the national average of 1.4%.

The average weekly wage of employees of private businesses increased since last years' Q1. The averge weekly wage increased by $43 or 4.0%. Growth in average weekly wage of employees of private businesses in Virginia grew faster than the national average of 3.8%.


Leading Sectors

Businesses by Sector

The sector with the greatest number of businesses in the state is Healthcare with 16.7% of the businesses in the state. The number of businesses in this sector increased by 18.3%. Professional services (15.3%), which increased by 2.8% and Other services (10.7%), which decreased by 14.9%, round out the 3 largest sectors.

Table: Sectors by Year-over-Year Qtly Business Change %
SectorChange Biz% Change
Healthcare7,27318.3%
Information3407.9%
Utilities174.7%
Company management954.3%
Transport and warehousing2033.8%
Real estate and rental3343.4%
Manufacturing2273.4%
Professional services1,1772.8%
Arts and entertainment832.7%
Accommodation and food services3662.1%
Educational services682.0%
Waste services2321.6%
Finance and insurance1581.3%
Construction2371.1%
Agriculture and forestry110.6%
Retail trade-36-0.1%
Mining and oil extraction-1-0.3%
Wholesale trade-75-0.7%
Other services-5,266-14.9%


Employees by Sector

The sector with the greatest number of employees in the state is Healthcare with 11.4% of the employees in the state, had an increase in employees of 2.6% in the last year. Professional services (11.0%), increased by 1.6% and Retail trade (10.2%), decreased by 2.0%, round out the top 3 sectors.

Table: Sectors by Year-over-Year Qtly Employee Change %
SectorEmployee Change% Change
Company management4,6726.2%
Transport and warehousing5,4494.7%
Real estate and rental1,7403.2%
Healthcare11,4352.6%
Mining and oil extraction1522.5%
Arts and entertainment1,4572.4%
Construction4,7172.4%
Manufacturing4,6241.9%
Waste services4,3221.8%
Professional services7,0121.6%
Finance and insurance1,9111.4%
Educational services5720.9%
Information700.1%
Wholesale trade210.0%
Accommodation and food services-1,014-0.3%
Utilities-87-0.8%
Retail trade-8,243-2.0%
Other services-4,396-3.0%
Agriculture and forestry-448-3.3%


Average Weekly Wage by Sector

The sector that pays their employees the highest is Company management paying $2,261per week compared with the state average of $1,106. Weekly wages in this sector rose by $157 or 7.5%. Professional services ($2,014), rose by $59 or 3.0% and Information ($1,930) increased by $117 or 6.5% round out the 3 largest sectors.

Table: Sectors by Year-over-Year Weekly Wage Change %
SectorWage ChangeChange %
Company management$1577.5%
Information$1176.5%
Other services$475.9%
Retail trade$335.8%
Wholesale trade$684.6%
Educational services$374.5%
Construction$474.4%
Accommodation and food services$164.3%
Real estate and rental$393.8%
Finance and insurance$543.3%
Professional services$593.0%
Waste services$253.0%
Agriculture and forestry$192.9%
Manufacturing$282.5%
Healthcare$222.3%
Transport and warehousing$141.4%
Mining and oil extraction$-14-1.0%
Utilities$-34-1.7%
Arts and entertainment$-15-3.0%


Leading Industries

Businesses by Industry

Each broad sector is made up of specific industries. In Virginia. the industry with the most businesses is Services for the elderly and disabled with 9.3% of the businesses in the state (with 26,346 employing 33,574 workers). The Services for the elderly and disabled industry had 6,201 more businesses, an increase of 30.8% in the last year. Computer systems design and related services (5.3% of businesses) added 413 businesses, an increase of 2.8% and Restaurants and other eating places (5.2% of businesses) added 355 businesses, an increase of 2.5% round out the 3 industries with the most businesses.

Table: Top 7 Industries by Business Change %
IndustryBusiness Chg% Change
Battery manufacturing2100.0%
Home health care services58252.8%
Motion picture and video distribution250.0%
Asphalt paving and roofing materials mfg.850.0%
Metal valve manufacturing444.4%
Tobacco manufacturing642.9%
Construction machinery manufacturing440.0%


Table: Top 7 Industries by Business Change #
IndustryBusiness Chg% Change
Services for the elderly and disabled6,20130.8%
Home health care services58252.8%
Computer systems design and related services4132.8%
Restaurants and other eating places3552.5%
Management consulting services2934.2%
Temporary help services1968.6%
Offices of real estate agents and brokers1906.2%


Employees by Industry

Computer systems design and related services (5.3% of employees) added 413 employees, an increase of 2.8% and Restaurants and other eating places (5.2% ofemployees) added 355 employees, an increase of 2.5% round out the 3 industries with the most employees.

Table: Top 7 Industries by Employee Change %
IndustryEmp Chg% Change
Pension funds121393.5%
Local messengers and local delivery2,921184.7%
Asphalt paving and roofing materials mfg.576143.4%
Motor vehicle seating and interior trim mfg.33570.3%
Motion picture and video distribution356.7%
Commodity contracts brokerage542.6%
Motor vehicle electric equipment mfg.14940.2%


Table: Top 7 Industries by Employee Change #
IndustryEmp Chg% Change
Services for the elderly and disabled4,83416.8%
Management of companies and enterprises4,6726.2%
Local messengers and local delivery2,921184.7%
Management consulting services2,8264.2%
Electrical and wiring contractors2,66610.6%
Data processing hosting and related services2,36721.6%
Ship and boat building2,3528.7%


Average Weekly Wage by Industry

The industry that pays their employees the most is Other depository credit intermediation, paying $8,699 compared with the state average of $1,106. The Other depository credit intermediation industry paid their employees $5,886 less per week, a decline of 40.4% in the last year. Trusts estates and agency accounts ($5,164) and Miscellaneous intermediation ($3,770) round out the top 3 industries. Employees in the Trusts estates and agency accounts ($5,164 per week) were paid $1,020 more per week, an increase of 24.6% and Miscellaneous intermediation ($3,770 per week) were paid $745 more per week, an increase of 24.6% round out the 3 industries that pay their employees the most.

Table: Top 7 Industries by Wage Change %
IndustryWkly Chg% Change
Polystyrene foam product manufacturing$837111.9%
Electronic shopping and mail-order houses$48559.1%
All other financial investment activities$82436.0%
Soap and cleaning compound manufacturing$50935.5%
Other specialized design services$26233.0%
Independent artists writers and performers$27031.1%
Turned product and screw nut and bolt mfg.$23128.1%


Table: Top 7 Industries by Wage Change $
IndustryWkly Chg% Change
Trusts estates and agency accounts$1,02024.6%
Polystyrene foam product manufacturing$837111.9%
All other financial investment activities$82436.0%
Miscellaneous intermediation$74524.6%
Soap and cleaning compound manufacturing$50935.5%
Electronic shopping and mail-order houses$48559.1%
Investment banking and securities dealing$40012.3%


Company Size

Virginia Businesses by Size

The solopreneur company, has the most businesses in Virginia by far. 65.3% of all businesses in the state have fewer than 5 employees. The 265,303 small businesses in the state represent 95.8% of all private businesses. The national average is 92.4%. (Small businesses have fewer than 50 employees, Solopreneurs employ fewer than 5.) Virginia added 9,645 businesses in the last year, an increase of 3.6% as compared to the national average of 3.0%.

Small businesses are defined as companies with fewer than 50 employees. These small businesses added 9,546 businesses in the last year, which is an increase of 3.7% as compared to the national average of 3.1%.

Mid-sized businesses are defined as companies with between 50 and 499 employees. These mid-sized businesses added 95 businesses in the last year, which is an increase of 0.9% as compared to the national average of 1.3%.

Large businesses are defined as companies with more than 500 employees. These large businesses added 4 businesses in the last year, which is an increase of 1.0% as compared to the national average of 2.1%.



Virginia Employees by Business Size

Virginia added 122,141 employees in the last year, an increase of 4.0% as compared to the national average of 5.2%. Small businesses are defined as companies with fewer than 50 employees. These small businesses added 26,943 businesses in the last year, which is an increase of 11.3% as compared to the national average of 4.2%.

Mid-sized businesses are defined as companies with between 50 and 499 employees. Mid-sized businesses added 50,176 employees in the last year, which is an increase of 4.1% as compared to the national average of 4.7%.

Large businesses are defined as companies with more than 500 employees. Large businesses added 45,022 employees in the last year, which is an increase of 10.9% as compared to the national average of 9.2%.

Virginia Avg Weekly Wages by Business Size

The smallest companies in Virginia (those with fewer than 5 employees) pay workers 8.5% more than the national average ($1,098 per week as compared to the national average of $1,005 per week). The largest companies in Virginia (those with more than 1,000 employees) pay 5.6% workers below the national average ($1,811 per week as compared to the national average of $1,913 per week).

Average weekly wages in small businesses added $125 per week in the last year, which is an increase of 3.3% as compared to the national average of 3.1%. Employees of mid-sized businesses added $18 in wages per week in the last year, which is an increase of 0.5% as compared to the national average of 1.3%.

Employees of large businesses added $129 of weekly wages in the last year, which is an increase of 3.8% as compared to the national average of 2.1%.

Top Industries for Business and Employment

The table below illustrates the largest industries in the state, by number of businesses:

Table: Top 10 Industries by # of Businesses
Industry# Businesses% Change
Services for the elderly and disabled26,34630.8%
Computer systems design and related services15,0152.8%
Restaurants and other eating places14,6752.5%
Private households12,876-30.2%
Management consulting services7,2824.2%
Residential building construction5,2730.6%
Offices of physicians5,0541.9%
Offices of lawyers3,7570.4%
Accounting and bookkeeping services3,5432.3%
Wholesale trade agents and brokers3,407-6.7%


The table below illustrates the largest industries in the state, by number of employees:

Table: Top 10 Industries by # of Employees
Industry# Employees% Change
Restaurants and other eating places287,789-0.2%
Computer systems design and related services166,4100.2%
General medical and surgical hospitals99,9212.3%
Management of companies and enterprises80,1546.2%
Offices of physicians72,8130.9%
Management consulting services69,5104.2%
Supermarkets and other grocery stores67,353-1.5%
Temporary help services65,3143.0%
General merchandise stores including warehouse clubs and supercenters53,145-2.3%
Engineering services47,0742.7%


The table below illustrates the largest industries in the state, by highest wages:

Table: Top 10 Industries by Weekly Wage
IndustryWkly Wages% Change
Other depository credit intermediation$8,699-40.4%
Trusts estates and agency accounts$5,16424.6%
Miscellaneous intermediation$3,77024.6%
Investment banking and securities dealing$3,65812.3%
Other financial vehicles$3,178-36.9%
Sea coastal and great lakes transportation$3,148-1.8%
Motion picture and video distribution$3,1312.4%
All other financial investment activities$3,11336.0%
Securities brokerage$3,082-8.8%
Computer and software merchant wholesalers$3,0091.6%




Data Sources




About the Writer

This page was created and is maintained by Kurt Tietjen, Founder of Stavera, High Peak Media & HomeGearWorks.com. Kurt is an executive, data scientist and software engineer who holds an MBA in Management Information Systems. In 2010, he partnered with scientists at Northwestern University to launch The Street Wire. This was one of the first mainstream uses of what would become “Narrative Science”, an artificial intelligence platform specializing in natural language generation. You can contact Kurt on LinkedIn here.